Monday, December 29, 2008


I normally post to this blog either via the desktop Blogger application when I'm at home, or previously when out and about by email. The problem with using email (any email application from a mobile) I've found, is that is doesn't handle text formating very well. The post looks great in the email app (and I've used Versamail and Snappermail on the Palm platform and the Windows app on the Win Mob platform), but when posted theere are odd line breaks which make the posts look tatty.

Anyway, Murray at Palm-Mac told me he uses iBlogger from illuminex so I thought I'd give it a try.

Downloading was the usual cinch from the App Store, after committing to pay a whopping 59 pence. The app itself is easy to use,m as are most iPhone apps, and all it took was for me to enter my username and password after selecting my Blog platform. All the usual platforms are supported, so if you have a blog, chances are you could use iBlogger if you have an iPhone.

The only downside, and I am frsutrated by this, is that for the Blogger platform that I uses, iBlogger does not yet provide the ability to upload pictures/photos. I can live with this, and the blurb in the App Store does say a future version will support uploading of pictures to Blogger, so fingers crossed this actually happens.

All in all though, a decent app I think.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Cat Update

You'll recall the little blighter pulled a claw Christmas Eve morning and I had to take him to the vet whereupon an operation and 150 big ones lighter he emerged with a bandaged foot and a lampshade collar.

Well, he's much better now. He could still reach his foot with his collar, and after the nurse took his dressing off yesterday, today we've dispensed with the collar as a) he doesn't like it, b) he kept hitting and walking into things all the time and couldn't get anywhere he wanted to, c) he couldn't eat properly with it and d) he's not really interested in his foot anyway. All he wants to do is go out - and that's a no-no for another 8 days at least.

He is cute though isn't he?

Win ugly: City 1-0 Plymouth

A 1-0 win at Ninian Park aainst the Pilgrims lifts City to fourth spot after results around them went their way. This wasn't a classic, classy City performance though. It was a real dogged, ugly, and at times, dire performance from both teams, probably reflecting that this was their second match in three days.

City should have had a penalty early on, when Paul Parry was blatantly clipped in the penalty area, but referee Stuart Attwell (he of the phantom goal at Watford) ruled against City. Apart from that, I can't really recall anything good about the first half. Plymouth played a physical game, and the fact no cards were issued until late in the game was a real surprise.

It took until the 81st minute for Jay Bothroyd, who'd worked hard holding the ball up and being battered to fire City into the lead, and frankly, so poor were Plymouth that one goal was always going to be enough. Still, after the Reading 'keeper scoring to salvage a point for the Royals on Boxing Day in the 96th minute, hearts were in mouths when we conceded a corner in injury time and their 'keeper came up for it. We cleared it though, and Chopra, just about past their last defender on half way was cynically scythed down, and an instant and wholly deserved red card was the only justifiable outcome. That was pretty much it. If we can win when we play so poorly, maybe there's a glimmer of hope for us yet.

On another note, is that the last we see of Michael Chopra? His loan is now up, and with Sunderland losing and looking like they need goals, and rumour has it QPR putting in a bid for him, we may never see him in a City shirt again. Manager Dave Jones and Chairman Peter Ridsdale were making all the right noises in their programme notes about work going on to "resolve" the situation, but the bottom line is we may not have enough money to keep him here. I hope we do, but I'm not holding my breath.

City v Plymouth

Just loaded up iblogger whilst at Ninian Park after reading an email from Murray at Palm-Mac (how easy is this iPhone thingy!), so here's my first iblogger post. Result later.

New home for Palm-Mac

If you visit this site regularly, you'll probably have visited the Palm-Mac blog too, as it's one of my favourite reads and bookemarked in my favourite links on this blog.

My digital mucker Murray has now moved his blog, and you can now find Palm-Mac at the much more logical

Murray tends to focus on mobile gadget stuff (mostly iPhone, Palm with a bit of Mac thrown in for good measure) and Aberdeen football club, but occasionally strays into all sorts of other areas too. His posts are usually incisive, and sprinkled with a decent sense of humour too. Well worth bookmarking or adding to your RSS feeds. A jolly good read.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Any City fan would have probably taken a point away at second placed Reading today, and for 88 minutes it looked the three and a half thousand travelling faithful were going to get that point. Then, Michael Chopra (who else) playing in his last but one game for the club on his loan spell, popped up to give City the lead and it looked, like all three points.

However, deep, deep into injury time - five minutes in it appears, Reading's 'keeper of all people, put the ball into the net from a corner, and Reading saved their blushes.

I'm mortified that City having worked so hard, have yet again squandered a lead late in the game. This isn't the first time this season, and the frailty of their defence at times suggests it won't be the last. I wonder what manager Dave Jones will make of it. I'll bet there's not too many cheery faces in the away dressing room at the moment, and I'm personally getting fed up of saying "a point's a point" when it really should have been three.

The Christmas Meme

Saw this over at David's Palmblogging, so thought I'd do one for the Lentil!
(For Christmas Day)

  1. What is the first Present you opened today? Some "smellies" (from my stocking - we all still have stockings in our house!)
  2. What's the first Christmas song you have heard today? Oh Come all ye Faithful when we went to Church (I rarely go - Anne and the kids are regulars)
  3. Queen's Speech? Not for me
  4. Who's the first person you spoke to on the phone today? My sister-in-law. My Dad's staying over at my brother's for Christmas.
  5. Stockings? Oh yes - see above.
  6. Do you write thank you letters? No - all verbal as we see most people over the holiday period anyway
  7. Any Breakfast rituals? Vaguely. Breakfast is scrambled egg with smoked salmon, no-one into the living room to attack presents until breakfast done, washed up, turkey in etc.
  8. Any present opening rituals? Watch the kids diving in then ours
  9. Ever spent Christmas day on holiday? No
  10. Favourite ever Christmas number one. Can't recall if it was ever No. 1, but "Wish it Could be Christmas Every Day" by Wizzard has to be up there (D'oh!)

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Bedlam and the cat

Woke up this morning. A few hours in work I thought, home, feet up, let Christmas begin.

Then I walked into the kitchen and saw the blood all over the floor! The cat had managed to (almost) pulled a claw right out of his hind paw - you'll rmember he's only just back from the vet's a couple of weeks. So off I trundled again. The vet took one look and said "He needs an operation to sort that out".

Left him with vet, went to work, did very little.

Mid-day, vet calls, all ready. Waited until about 1:30pm, then went to pick him up. The vets is in the retail par in Cardiff Bay, and it was utter bedlam. The world and his wife (and most of their kids) were out doing lats minute shopping. Cars parked everywhere - complete mayhem. I just don't get it.
  1. Why leave your Christmas shopping that late?
  2. The damn shops are open again on Saturday, if not Boxing Day!
Anyway, picked up the cat, paid a lovely unexpected bill of £150. Bless him, he's all over the place, disoriented from the anaesthetic, and got one of those "lampshade" collars on he needs to keep on for about 10 days! He can't go out for that long either - he's a real outdoor cat, so this is going to be a seriously annoying time for him (and probably us!).

Anyway, that was my Christmas Eve. Last post now I promise, for oh, maybe a day. A beer cracked, and mince pies beckon.

Have a good one all. Miaow!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Palm memos to iPhone

I've just bought Appigo's "Notebook" fro the iPhone, ostensibly to get my Palm Memos into the iPhone.

Basically, after syncing my Palm with Outlook, I exported the memos (now Notes) as a CSV. I registered with Toodledo, imported the CSV and synced to the iPhone. A few minor tweaks to sort some formatting, but all the data's there. Painless and took less than 5 minutes. Notebook looks like a dceent app, though one of the more expensive at a whopping £2.99. A bargain if ever there was one.

Thanks to Trevor for a nudge towards Notebook

Merry Christmas & a Happy New Year

Jingle bells and all that. Christmas comes but once a year, although this year's gone so fast I'd swear we've had two Christmases in the last twelve months...

Anyway, it's almost upon us, and though I've got to go to work tomorrow (Boo!) I doubt there'll actually be much work done, and all being well I'll get a reasonable early finish in.

Then it's a lovely break as I don't have to be back in until 5th January, and boy am I going to make the most of it!

I'm sure I'll get around to the odd post, but they'll probably be fewer and further between than usual, not that they're that frequent anyway!

So, I'd just like to take this opportunity to wish my reader a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. No seriously, both of you. Ha ha! No, everyone of course, and a special mention to a couple of people who I come into digital contact with a bit more often than others. Murray over at Palm-Mac, and David over at Palmblogging - hope you both have a good one, and take it easy come Hogmanay! And Shaun and the crew over at PDA247

And anyone else who happens to drop by.

I'm off for a mince pie and a sherry.....

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Christmas cheer: City 2-0 Sheffield Wednesday

City gladdened the hearts of all their fans after taking all three points from the last game before Christmas in front of 17,600 at Ninian Park.

In truth, the first half was mediocre (again). City should have been at least one up at the break after Bothroyd hoisted a Rojer Johnson nod down high over the bar when he really should have scored. Other than that it was a half to forget - City not attheir best and Wednesday a poor looking side.

Once again Dave Jones must have had something put into the tea at half time, as in the second period City looked a different side. Four minutes in, Johnson had a shot deflected past a helpless 'keeper to put us one up. The Fanzine "The Thin Blue Line" I'd bought had been talking about how many penalties we'd had awarded against us this season, and that 15 was the most any club had gained in a season. We already had 12 to our name before Ledley was brought down in the box to make it 13, and Michael Chopra stepped up to convert from the spot. For about 10 minutes after that, we dominated and could have scored another two or three, but in the end, the two goals proved enough as we saw out the match to take the points.

A couple of other City points of note.

Firstly, we've bought our season tickets for next year. No really. Yes, it's only December, and we're only just half way through this season. But, the tickets for the new stadium went on sale last week, and if we commit to buying before January, we're guaranteed to get the the tickets for the 2010/11 season at 2009/10 prices - irrespective of which division we're in. As we're pushing for the Premiership (no, we really are), and Min0Stats ticket is only £49 as he's under 16, and mine's just over £300, that seems like an absolute bargain - unless of course we were to be relegated two seasons running and we'd be playing in League Two!!

Secondly, although things are looking bright just now and we're in fifth spot, Michael Chopra's loan spell comes to an end at the end of December, Wayne Routledge's in January, and Joe Ledley, our "Crown Jewel" could well be sold to a Premiership side in Januray. If we don't hang on to that lot, or can't replace them with quality players we could be in trouble. Let's hope not.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


The default iPhone notes application is pretty basic, so I've been looking around the App Store for a suitable alternative. And for the moment I might have found one.

YouNote is a free app, so you lose nothing by giving it a go.

You can record several different types of note. The bog standard text note using the on screen keyboard, a photo note ( is a photo as a note with some supporting text, a freehand note using your finger to draw -a bit like Diddlebug on Palm, and a note takes a screenshot of a web page and basically acts as a links back to it.

There's a couple of ways to view your notes on screen too.

Finally, you can back up your notes to your desktop. This seems a bit convoluted because it's an over the air sync via wifi not via iTunes. You don't get an actual straight copy of your notes on your desktop, but a zip file containing your notes as image files. Not perfect I suppose but it is a backup and not a working copy of your notes.

It's certainly got a bit more about it than the standard note app, and I feel has got some potential. Worth a try.

Via my iPhone

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

DVD Catalyst

Although I wasn't an avid watcher of movies on my Palm devices - probably because of the screen size, I did occasionally pass some time watching a movie or two. I use DVD Catalyst to rip my DVDs, which costs around $20 at the moment.

It's fairly easy to use, and although not the quickest, does the job, and neatly, has the ability to rip to a multitude of formats, the iPhone included,

Stupidly, I'd not backed up my Catalyst install file, and ended up downloading a trial before I realised I hadn't got my original install file or a copy of my purchase email.

I emailed Catalyst support last Sunday afternoon, and by 10.30pm UK time had got a response with a link to the right download, and confirming that they'd found my original purchase info based on my email. Superb. I emailed back to say thanks, and got another email saying "no problem and "Happy Holidays". Great customer service.

Anyway, all installed fine, and as a tester for my iPhone I ripped Star Wars Episode III Revenge of the Sith - a bit of a SW fan I'm afraid, ever since seeing the original SW about 10 times in the cinema back in '77.

Worked a treat. Some pixellation in brighter action scenes, but I'm not going to argue the toss about that. For me, to pass a while now and then, it does the job nicely.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Photogene for iPhone

OK, the Apple iPhone's camera is not the best on a mobile device in the world. Not by a long way. But it's there, and for taking occasional snaps it'll suffice. After coming from the Treo and Centro devices from Palm, the iPhone camera is pretty good believe me!

But, it has it's drawbacks. The camera functions are limited, and the snaps will not be that great.

However, I've recently splashed out a whopping £1.79 on an application from the App Store called Photogene and I have to say, for less than two quid it's a steal.

Basically, it allows you to retouch your photos on the go. It offers a number of basic but servicable tools which are:

  • Crop
  • Rotate
  • Sharpen
  • Brightness/contrast levels (histogram)
  • Colour alteration - temperature and saturation
  • Effect - B&W, Infrared and some horrible bright colour thing
  • Add symbols (like speech bubbles type of thing)
  • Border and background
  • Undo and redo
  • Reset
It's not going to make a bad photo into a good photo, but it might make a poor photo into a servicable photo. I've only had it on my iPhone 15 minutes, and I think it's worth every one of the 179 pennies I paid for it.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Tractor Boys rolled over: Ipswich 1-2 City

City return from east Anglia having bagged all three points against the Tractor Boys. Goals from Jay Bothroyd and a first for Hungarian central defender Gabor Gyepes were enough to counter Jon Stead's solitary strike for the Ipswich outfit.

This is a good win for City away from home, in what's traditionally been a tough fixture for them. A great early Christmas present for Dave Jones and the team.

Up the City!

PDA Thoughts needs a Phone

Luca, one of my regular blog stop-offs over at PDA Thoughts has come to the conclusion his pocket pc phone just doesn't cut it any more.

Interestingly, this is a view that's becoming more apparent amongst some smartphone users types (me, Murray over at Palm -Mac and now Luca to name just three - ok, it's not scientific is it?) who find the hassle of Win Mob jsut too much bother.

As Luca put's it:

"....I have not installed new software, let alone tweaked something. The only thing that I do know is that I’m fed up with this situation where you have to do all kinds of stuff just to get things working. If you experience the “It just works” feeling (he's an iPhone user too BTW), then it’s very hard to accept anything less I’m afraid. What will happen with the TyTN 2 is still a question, but don’t expect it to linger around much longer…"

Thursday, December 11, 2008


The Mondeo is in for a major service tomorrow. That's fairly bad planning on my part a couple of weeks before Christmas, but it needs to be done. And whilst that's happening, I'll be spending what's left of my money doing my final bits of Christmas shopping. Got a day off on my own tomorrow. Can take my time, take it easy and make sure I get everything sorted.


The iPhone makes a great gaming device. With it's accelerometer, you can use the device itself to "steer" in games like Cro-Mag Rally, a game that shows off the capabilitiies of the iPhone very well.

Unfortunately, it also shows off another side of the iPhone - that it's essentially a computer, and prone to crash from time to time. Neat though Cro-Mag is as a game, every time I've run it, my iPhone has decided to lock up. Quite why this is the case I'm unsure at the moment, which is a shame, because it shows a real "wow" factor to the device.

iPhone Wish List

There are some things that the iPhone isn't good at, or functionality that it doesn't have. Cut and paste for one. Well, here's an interesting web site, where those "wish lists" of things we'd like our device to have is recorded, and you can add your vote. Whether Apple actually takes any notice of things like this is another matter, but hey, it might help.

There are for example, 40,357 votes for MMS functionality, down to 1 vote for a Page up/down button for long documents. Add you vote now, and don't say democracy doesn't exist!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Has he just worked this out?

Our esteemed Chancellor of the Purse Strings, according to this BBC story says the UK economy is likely to enter a recession. Excuse me, but where has he been hiding lately if he's just worked this out?

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Old boy stops the win: Burnely 2-2 City

It was inevitable I suppose. We finally got rid of Steve Thompson because he could score a goal, he goes to Burnley and when we play them he gets on the scoresheet!

Can't tell you much about the game, I was only getting SMS updates. Burnley went ahead in the first half, and Jay Bothroyd equalised for the Bluebirds before the break. Straight after the turnaround, City went 2-1 up through Wayne Routledge, who's fast becoming a City legend in his short loan spell, before old boy Thommo made sure the points were shared with a 76th minute equaliser.


Up the City!

Monday, December 08, 2008

Palm 247 gets a revamp

I'm a long time visitor and occasional contributor to what was the Palm 247 site run by the venerable Shaun McGill. This site also had sections for Win Mob and Symbian and has been gradually evolving over the years. This weeks it's had a revamp as Shaun has relaunched it as PDA247, with specific sections for Palm, iPhone, Win Mob, Blackberry and Symbian to reflect the widening smartphone/PDA base out there in the real world.

A huge amount of effort goes into making this site one of the number one smartphone/mobile device sites out there (in my humble opinion), and it's well worth bookmarking and subscribing to the RSS feeds. It's a very friendly site. Lot's of regular contributors across a wide range of platforms, but always welcoming to "newbies". Highly recommended.

iPhone cases and alarms

One of the things that's struck me about the iPhone apart from how easily it picks up fingerprints (funny - it never bothered me on the Centro) is that it's quite a slippery device.

Lovely though the iPhone is, it's not a natural shape for the hand, and I've been petrified ever since I've had it about dropping it. My Centro also gradually picked up a scuff mark on the back where it used to lay on a surface, and I don't want the same to happen with the iPhone.

Generally I shun cases for devices. They are either to fiddly, bulky when you need frequent access and I've just never got on with them. If I had a Nokia I wouldn't have a case, so why have one with anything else?

Nevertheless, there are few rubber "skin" type cases for the iPhone, and I found one like the one pictured here on Amazon for just a couple of pounds, so I thought I'd give it a go.

As usual for Amazon it arrived promptly with no-fuss (along with a screen protector which I discarded straight away because it was crap and I don't like screen protectors, and the iPhone screen is supposedly scratch resistant anyway).

It's basically a back only case which slips onto the iPhone with no fuss and adds only minimal girth to the device. It has holes for the connector, mute switch, camera and earphone jack, but none for the volume and on-off switch. However, both of these switches work perfectly well through the case. The cut out holes fit perfectly.

Immediately this case gives the iPhone more "grip" and it feels unlikely to slip from my grasp. Equally I can put it down on any surface knowing I'm not going scratch the back of it. I'm quite impressed considering the cheap price.

The only downside I've found so far, is the "grippiness" makes it a bugger to get in and out of a pocket, so I may use the case selectively, depending on what I'm doing. It's so easy to put on and off, it's hardly going to be a problem doing this. Whether I persist or eventually succumb to my preferred "naked device" approach, we'll have to wait and see.

The other thing that I've found (it's taken me over a week!) is the alarm clock. One of the things that's been bugging me is the lack of a task manager/todo. All the todo's I've seen tend to be list type todo's with the ability (sometimes) to put a due date, but not a due time in (there may be something like this, but I haven't found it yet).

All I want to be able to do (pardon the pun) is put something into the device along the lines of "Pick up kids" with an alert at 6pm type of thing. Well, the alarm clock function fits the bill perfectly (almost).You can create multiple alarms, and importantly give them a custom name as well as an alert time. So almost perfect, except you can't put a future date in - the alarm has to be set in hours and minutes. You can set it to repeat any day of the week (or a combination of days) so there is a partial workaround. For the moment, until I can find a decent task/to do list manager, it'll do for me.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Winter warmer: City 2 - 0 Preston

Preston started this match in 6th spot, one place above City. None of the early exchanges suggested this was a Championship top 6 display, as the first half looked more playground kick and run. City looked the better side (slightly), but still persisted in hoofing the ball forward. McCormack limped off with what looked like a recurrence of his recent hamstring, and Chopra, who was ill yesterday came off the bench. Preston should have been down to 10 midway through the first period, after their 'keeper scuffed a clearance, fell over and Wayne Routledge had only to shoot into an empty net, but was hauled back by a defender. Referee Andy D'Urso saw fit only to issue a yellow. City went ahead just before the break as the excellent Routeldge delivered a pin point cross that Roger Johnson nodded home.

Dave Jomes must have said something worthwhile at half time, as City looked a different class after the break. All players suddenly looked confident, and the passing became better and better. Parry who'd looked lacklustre, was beating his defender for fun, Bothroyd worked hard and won a penalty after charging into their box which Chopra converted easily. Routledge continued where he'd left off in the first half, and although Johnson got the MoM, I thought Routledge deserved it - he was outstanding. City then saw out the rest of the match pretty comfortably, moving up to 5th spot. Every player deserves praise for the way they went about their business today.

Up the City!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008


Yikes it's been busy. So busy I've haven't blogged since Sunday or Twittered today. On Monday it was busy, busy, busy in work, then home, tea and out to see Rob Brydon (pictured) at the Wales Millenium Centre in Cardiff. Very funny man - and, for those "Gavin & Stacey" fans amongst you (if not, why not?), a surprise appearance by "Nessa" (Ruth Jones) atthe end. Brilliant.

Tuesday was busy, busy, busy in work, then home, tea and out for my first meeting as Cricket Club Chairman. Big agenda, but I think it went OK

Today, up with the lark - well 7:15 for a cuppa, and then out Chrimbo shopping with my other (and better) half. My job was to carry the bags. In fairness, we didn't go overboard, and were done by lunchtime - only because she'd already done most of it herself! Nice lunch out, then home for a sleep (I know, I know - I was knackered). This afternoon once I woke up I've been following up some stuff from the cricket meeting (just like being in work really), and now it's almost tea time, and then I'm off out for our latest skittles match. Blimey it's all go.

In between of course I've been fiddling with the iPhone. Couple of things.
Firstly, thr ringtones that come with the iPhone are frankly, well, crap. No really crap. So I;ve been following the tutorial in a message thread here to get some decent stuff on, and it's a cinch. works really well.

The other thing that's happened, is that some of my applications I've added to the device have been failing to open. You click the icon, it opens the app (or looks like it's going to) and then reverts to the home screen. A quick google has suggested that this can happen to apps that are downloaded straight tothe phone, rather than via iTunes. The solution is to ensure they'r in iTunes, delete them from your device and then re-sync. Seems to have fixed my problem, but annolyingly of course you have to set up everything in the app again. C'est la vie.

the other thing that's happened is I've set the device to sync via Exchange to keep my work/iPhone calendar all neat and tidy and in once place. Couldn't believe how easy it was to set this up. I won't leave this on all the time as it'll probably drain the battery quicker, and an occasional sync with my work PC is all that's required. As an aside I haven't set it up to push my work email - that stays at work!!!